Spring is Here

19:56 Alyson Tart 2 Comments

Let me just say that barring some strange interference from Mother Nature, I think that Spring is finally here! We had a beautiful weekend here with sun and warmer weather.  I cannot wait to do more exploring around Istanbul, Turkey and Eastern Europe.

Despite the less than Spring weather, my friend Katie and I were able to do lots of exploring during her visit a couple of weeks ago.  Without it being a crazy week (she was here for 5 days), we were able to be the MOST productive tourists EVER. At least in my humble opinion :)

During those 5 days we visited Ortakoy, the Grand Bazaar, the Spice Bazaar, Eminönü,, Galata Bridge, Taksim, Hagia Sophia, Basilica Cisterns, Blue Mosque, Topkapi Palace, the city walls, St. Chora Church, Aquaducts, Süleymaniye Mosque, Dolmabahçe, Taksim (again, via tram), Galata Tower, Bosphorus cruise to Anadolu Kavağı where we saw Yoros Castle.

Yes, most productive tourists. EVER. Well, except for perhaps someone like Rick Steve's who wrote the book on Istanbul.

Anyways, her trip gave me an opportunity to see lots of new things that I hadn't ventured out to in Istanbul and we became experts on the bus system. I personally love this because for 2 lira, I can just sit on the bus, ride into Taksim and not have to worry about the traffic, versus sitting in the cab watching the fare tick up. It has made me much more confident to get around Istanbul too.

Here are a few pictures of my new favorite spots we tried out on her trip:

Inside the St. Chora Church - the halls were covered with these beautiful mosaic tiles. Too bad it wasn't a sunny day to get some better pictures!

Close up of tiled ceiling in St. Chora Church

Süleymaniye Mosque built for Süleymaniye I by Mimar Sinan. We got a little lost getting there, but it was worth it. 
 Süleymaniye Mosque
 View of the Bosphorus from the Galata Tower. It may be the best view in the city.

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  1. Thanks for being my fabulous tour guide! I would have been lost without you. And I wouldn't say we got lost going to Suleymaniye, I'd say we took the scenic route so we wouldn't get there right as prayer started ;) We totally planned it.

    I hope you'll think of me every time you ride the bus now!

    1. Yes, definitely the scenic route to see REAL Istanbul. I'm so glad you came so we could share the city with you. And I do think of you whenever I ride the bus. We finally learned that Duracak means stop so it lights up when a stop has been requested.